New AWS-Zend Advanced Cloud Service Helps Developers Quickly Build Scalable API-Based Apps

Janet Wagner, Data Journalist / Full Stack Developer
Aug. 12 2014, 01:44PM EDT

Zend, the PHP company, has just announced that it is offering the latest version of Zend Server 7 featuring Z-Ray as an advanced cloud service on Amazon Web Services via the AWS Marketplace. The company has also launched brand-new Pay-As-You-Go developer plans for this new cloud service along with the Professional and Enterprise plans also available in the AWS Marketplace.

Zend Server 7 featuring the all-new Z-Ray technology was launched at the beginning of last month and is designed to make it easier for developers to quickly build high-quality API-based applications. The new AWS-Zend advanced cloud service also allows developers to innovative faster and create agile applications that are highly scalable. In addition, developers can integrate the AWS-Zend advanced cloud service with Apigility in order to create well-structured, scalable APIs that follow modern API design best practices. Terry Hanold, AWS VP of cloud commerce, states in the press release:

Zend Server 7 on AWS Marketplace delivers the kind of efficiency and flexibility that all businesses need in today’s hypercompetitive market, where expedited, agile application delivery is a must. Zend Server 7 on AWS Marketplace allows companies to build quality applications quickly and scale infinitely.

zend-server

The Monitor Events panel displays alerts about PHP errors, high memory usage, slow request execution and more. Image Credit: Zend

ProgrammableWeb reached out to Andi Gutmans, Zend's CEO and co-founder, who explained that the company is focused on providing products like AWS-Zend Server with Z-Ray and Apigility, the company's open source API builder, to help developers build APIs that adhere to modern API development best practices. Gutmans also said that Zend believes the field of API development is underserved, and products like Apigility are designed to encourage developers, PHP developers in particular, to shift to API-first development.

One of the key features of Zend Server 7 that is particularly beneficial to developers regularly consuming or developing APIs is Z-Ray. Z-Ray is a new technology developed by Zend that "exposes an application’s inner workings and logic," which allows developers to review, debug and optimize their code. Z-Ray provides developers with information such as page requests, execution time, memory peak, events, errors and warnings, and database queries in real time as they are building their applications. Z-Ray can be also be used to quickly and easily test APIs. Zeev Suraski, Zend's CTO and co-founder, states in the press release:

Using Zend Server Z-Ray is akin to wearing X-ray goggles, effortlessly giving developers deep insight into how their code is running as they are developing it — all without having to change any of their habits or workflow. With Z-Ray, developers can immediately understand the impact of their code changes, enabling them to both improve quality and solve issues long before their code reaches production.

At the time of this writing, Apigility is not shipping with Zend Server 7. However, the product does support Apigility integration as well as integration with Zend Studio. The company does plan to add Apigility to Zend Server in the future.

CEO Gutmans told ProgrammableWeb:

The next generation of mobile and web apps will be delivered as API-based services in the public cloud. Zend has already enabled companies to make the transition to API-centric apps with Apigility, the API builder. Now with the combined offering of Zend Server 7 and AWS, we enable companies to transparently scale those API-centric apps in the cloud and innovate a lot faster. We do that by combining Zend Server and AWS’s automation capabilities to empower customers with continuous delivery capabilities and by providing debugging and management capabilities that are game changing.

For more information about Zend Server 7 with Z-Ray, visit Zend.com. For more information about Apigility, visit Apigility.org.

See also ProgrammableWeb's article covering the launch of the Apigility project and the article covering Zend's goal to standardize API development via Apigility.

Janet Wagner Janet is a data journalist and full stack developer based in Toledo, Ohio. Her focus revolves around APIs, data visualization, machine learning, and data-driven journalism. Follow her on Twitter: @webcodepro and on Google+

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